1000 Miles & 500 Books

1000 Miles & 500 Books

TOMORROW will mark the final stop of my 12 date WH Smith Scottish signing tour which culminates with an appearance at their Aberdeen St Nicholas Centre store and it’s hard to believe that by the time I finish up and head back for Stirling I will have travelled over 1,000 miles and sold around 500 books.

When I started out with my first signing at WH Smith Stirling in The Thistles Centre, way back on March 5, I was, I admit, a bit trepidatious, as for an unknown author like myself this was a huge opportunity but also one in which my relative anonymity could well help to prove my undoing.

Thankfully that has not proven to be the case and from Ayr to Aberdeen, Livingston to Paisley and Dunfermline to Perth, I have met some very interesting people, been lucky enough to enjoy the platform that a signing tour with one of the top high street names in British Retail has provided and brought awareness of my books and DS Gus Thoroughgood to a whole host of people who have never heard of me or the good DS.

The tour has also set things up very nicely for the launch of my new book, the 1989 Thoroughgood prequel, The Shift, the paperback of which is to be published by McNidder & Grace and will launch on June 23. For all of that I owe a huge debt of thanks to WH Smith and in particular their Central Scotland stores co-ordinator Garry Torrance, who have backed me to the hilt.

Tomorrow morning I will be on the 0810 from Stirling, arriving in Aberdeen with just enough time to pick up a single shot skinny Mocha from Café Nero and head to the store and you can bet your bottom dollar that I will be saying my prayers that I finish on a high!

Of course it has not been all plain sailing! At The Glasgow Fort, just outside Easterhouse, being an ex-cop proved anything but a good selling point, while the number of people who informed me: “I dinnae read mate” left me with a desperate thirst!

But if you are one of the, and this is a guestimate, approx. 3,000 people, I will have spoken to on my tour and, even more so, if you are one of those who has bought one of my novels, can I thank you for the time you took to engage a slightly nervous author whose machine-gun chat belied the butterflies that were exploding inside.

It’s a big weekend for me with the end of the tour being followed by what I hope will be an interesting article this Sunday in the magazine section of the Sunday Mail and thank you to Heather Greenaway for proving such a patient and skilful interrogator!

I am also delighted to announce that The Shift by McNidder & Grace is now available on ebook if you click on www.amazon.co.uk/Shift-Z325-Thoroughgood-Thrillers-ebook/dp/B01G7U48YU/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1464340762&sr=1-1  ….so go on don’t be shy…make my day!!!

Today I have a very interesting coffee meet with one of Glasgow’s foremost Private Investigators, Mr Les Trueman, as I put together the plot of Thoroughgood V: ‘The Blood Acre’ but more of that later!



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Shift

380ece73-5600-4df9-8656-3f9ffdd0e89d                                                                     THE SHIFT

I am delighted to announce that the next book in my Thoroughgood Glaswegian detective series, a prequel set in 1989 and called “The Shift” will launch on Thursday, June 23, in Glasgow’s most exclusive five star hotel, One Devonshire Gardens.

It has been 16 months since my last book Parallel Lines was relaunched, what seems like another lifetime ago, in November 2014, and part of the reason for the hold up in the next Thoroughgood adventure coming out has been that I have changed publishers from Fledgling Press to McNidder & Grace.

But now, looking forward, what I can promise anyone wondering what “The Shift” will hold is an exceptionally gritty read and one that will transport the reader back to that summer.

The novel is based on some of the experiences I ‘enjoyed’ after I joined Strathclyde Police on July 31, 1989 and is interwoven with a fictionalised account of the Ice Cream War and the Northern Ireland troubles spilling over into Glasgow.

In it, if you have enjoyed my first three novels, you will once again meet some of the key characters from Thoroughgood’s first three outings, but also meet some interesting new ones, including a burglar turned informant known as “The Cat” who is based on a felon who once terrorised one of the beats I walked all these years back….in the last millennium!!

I have waited a long time to write this particular novel, and the experience in exercising some of the demons and misery that blighted my first two years as a probationer cop in Glasgow, has been cathartic.

Going back, to that now distant summer, I wondered just why I was enduring the misery that continued to blight the first two years of my police service and now, of course, I know why….so I could write about it!

So treat yourself to a copy of “The Shift” when it comes out and I can promise you a white-knuckle ride that will be very different from a standard crime thriller…why?

Because the author actually lived a lot of what he has written about and that is why the level of realism and grit you will get in my new book is a cut above anything else you will come across this summer!!

Back to the present and I am delighted to report that my Scottish Book Signing Tour with WH Smith has proven a great success so far, with four sell-outs at Stirling, Dunfermline, Ayr and Edinburgh Fort Kinnaird and now Paisley WH Smith next up for me this Saturday between 11am & 3pm.

If you are reading this blog and like the sound of my new book “The Shift”, but haven’t read any of the first three Thoroughgood novels (Parallel Lines, The Hurting, The Longest Shadow) can I suggest you ‘write’ that wrong now….I promise you won’t regret it!



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment